Davis Cup: Lithuania won in South Africa in a tough battle

What a long and nervous it was. Three long days with incredible battle from Lithuanian tennis player. Lithuania’s Davis Cup team started the battle in South Africa against the local team in round 2 of the Europe / Africa Group Zone II. Finally, at the last match in the third day Laurynas Grigelis was a hero with a sensational victory and with the tickets to the next round.

The meeting started this Friday when Ričardas Berankis dominated against the 25-year-old Jean Anderson who is taking the 863rd place in the world. Berankis finished the deal in straight sets with 6-3, 7(2)-6, 6-3. Next to play was Laurynas Grigelis. The 23-year old Lithuanian who is taking the 234th place in ATP hoped to give the second point to Lithuania but failed to do it when he lost in four sets 7-6(5), 7-6(3), 2-6, 7-6(4) to Rik De Voest whose rank is 261. At the end of the first day, the score was 1-1.

At Saturday’s doubles match, Berankis and Grigelis teamed up against Raven Klaasen who is taking the 26th world position in doubls and Jean Andersen. The match was cloze but the home team found the way to the victory and secured 2-1 led after 3-6, 6-3, 6-3, 7-6(5). Now Lithuania had to insure two singles victories in the last day in order to qualify to the third round.

The third day was critical to both teams. Lithuania sent Berankis first to the court against Rik De Voest. This time, the local tennis played surrendered to the Lithuanian after four sets 2-6, 4-6, 7-5, 5-7. Berankis gave some hope and air to Lithuanian team. Now, the whole responsibility was on Laurynas Grigelis’s shoulders.

Grigelis who lost the first match hoped to improve his performance when he faced Ruan Roelofse who is taking the 744th place. Despite the fact that the 24-year-old South African is ranked lower than the Lithuanian, the match was tough and in a very high playing level. Finally, after four sets and two tie breaks, Laurynas Grigelis secured the third and the final point to the Lithuanian team after 7(5)-6, 3-6, 7(3)-6, 6-4.

The next opponent of the Lithuanians is Bosnia and Herzogovina and will start at September 12th.

Aleksejus Podpruginas
Aleksejus Podpruginas is The Baltic Review author based in Israel

Davis Cup first day summary: Lithuania VS South Africa 1-1

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